Pass Your MOT
Step 1 - Cleaning & Handbrake
Clean the car thoroughly inside and out. If it looks well cared-for, the tester may be more likely to pass a borderline component.
Check that the handbrake works correctly. If you have to pull the lever a long way up (too many clicks), the cable may need adjustment.
Step 2 - Check Brake Fluid
Check the brake fluid level. Press the brake pedal and make sure that it doesn't feel spongy. If it does, there may be air in the hydraulic system which must be removed by bleeding.
Step 3 - Shocks & Screen
'Bounce' each corner of the car in turn. If the car doesn't settle after 1 or 2 bounces, the shock absorbers are worn out. Check for excessive play at the steering wheel, indicating wear in the linkage. There must be no cracks or chips in the windscreen within the driver's field of view.
Step 4 - Check Mirrors
Step 5 - Things Not To Miss
Step 6 - External Lights
Check the operation of all external lights. Your number plates and all lights must be clean and undamaged. If any of your lights are not working, replace the bulbs or check the wiring for loose connections.
Step 7 - Checking Your Tyres
Step 8 - Final Checks
Check the exhaust by starting the engine and holding a clean cloth over the tailpipe. You will be able to hear if the system is leaking. Repair or renew as necessary.
Check the seat belts for fraying, cuts or other signs of damage. The front seats must be securely attached and the back-rests must lock in the upright position.
A recent service gives your car the best chance of passing an MOT. A dirty air filter or worn spark plugs can increase emissions. Diesel smoke emissions can be improved by using an injector cleaning fuel additive and giving the car a fast run just before the test. You are entitled to watch the test being carried out, and you may pick up some useful information about the general condition of your car. A friendly tester will sometimes point out items which, although not part of the test, might need attention.